UAB Cares receives national award and recognition

UAB’s comprehensive and coordinated suicide-prevention strategy has been recognized by the American College Health Association.

Inside UABCaresBOXThe University of Alabama at Birmingham’s UAB Cares Suicide Prevention Initiative was selected as a recipient of the American College Health Association’s Best Practices in College Health Award for the 2021–2022 program year. According to the ACHA, this award recognizes exemplary, innovative and inspirational practices in college health.

Started in summer 2018 with the branding and website launched during the beginnings of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the mission of UAB Cares is to support and assist the entire UAB community — no matter who they are — in finding the help they need and ensuring they know they are important and matter. It includes resources for suicide education, prevention, intervention, response, follow-up and postvention.

“This Best Practices award is a testament that the work we are doing here at UAB is significant and inclusive — it matters, it’s valuable, and it’s helping us provide support to any member of the UAB community in need,” said Angela Stowe, Ph.D., director of Student Counseling Services. “What makes UAB Cares unique is that our enterprise-wide approach leaves no UAB community member behind and meets any Blazer where they are in needing help and resources.”

UAB Cares offers resources online at, including a section with emergency crisis contacts for those who need help right now.

“The nomination and numerous letters of support for the UAB Cares initiative made it very clear that the program has contributed greatly to the overall health and wellness of students at your university and sets a wonderful example for programming excellence for college health around the globe,” ACHA noted in their recognition of UAB Cares.

UAB Cares was built by a task force of UAB graduate and undergraduate students, faculty, staff, and administrators appointed by UAB President Ray Watts, senior vice president of Academic Affairs, Provost Pam Benoit and Vice President of Student Affairs John Jones. 

“This national recognition really helps put UAB on the map,” Stowe said. “The representation and involvement from all corners of UAB’s campus to make UAB Cares a reality and keep it moving forward over the past few years is something I am super proud to be a part of.”